Ethiopia: Agency Focuses On Addressing Bottlenecks for Cooperatives Competitiveness

ADDIS ABABA - The Federal Cooperative Agency said that it has been undertaking reform to achieve expected goals via overcoming the ever-changing external and internal pressures cooperatives have encountered and properly addressing shortcomings witnessed so far.

Speaking at an event organized to discuss the reform, Federal Cooperative Agency Director-General Usman Surur, said that cooperatives have a number of limitations in terms of meeting intended targets.

Hence, applying reform is of vitally significant in addressing these problems, making cooperatives competitive as well as reforming itself as it is timely and mandatory to contribute a lot to the economic development of the country.

According to him, the agency has been performing various activities to help the rural and urban development sectors cooperate and organize themselves associate well. The sector is contributing its share to the country's economic growth in various dimensions; he said adding that it has been benefiting many citizens out of creating job opportunities.

As the associations have faced various challenges, additional activities such as overcoming challenges and building capacity to meet the ever-changing external and internal pressures cooperatives have faced is badly needed. Inclusive reform is underway both at federal and organized associations levels to create a timely and effective cooperative system.

"The reform will enable us to create economically strong cooperatives that can effectively compete at national and international levels. It will also create strong savings and credit institutions to better serve their members and be sources of capital for other associations," he said.

The new reform will enable cooperatives to add value to agricultural products and become competitive enterprises in the national and international markets. The activity towards the reform is bringing about a change in attitudes and practical actions, he added.

Dirriba Bekele, Director of Cooperative Promotion with the Agency, on his part said that so far cooperatives have been making significant contributions to the country's development.

The existence of unorganized associations, inadequate support, financial and logistics limitations, inadequate infrastructure, lack of implementation capacity and knowledge have challenged and hindered cooperatives from achieving their goals.

Some associations are not in a position to discharge their responsibilities and meet their members' demands. Hence, the reform is going to be implemented in a way that will address the problems taking past practices and experiences of other countries into account.

The Ethiopian herald January 5/2021

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